Auto Insurance Claims/Theft of Vehicle


My truck was stolen on 10-3-2014. My isurance company has been horrible to deal with! I had a rental through my policy and had to return because it had been more then 30 days. I have sent all requested info OVERNIGHT including the vehicle title, heys and the power of attorny form. My husband neg the settlement and they sent the documentaion. 2 days later the truck was recovered. It had been over a month and they are not goingt o honor the claim. They asked me to go see the truck (cant no vehicle) and no keys or title. They said they would contact me back. I received the settlement check a week later dated the 11-10 and called and left message no response. I looked online at there was a notation saying no further action is needed. I went to deposit the check they had stopped payment. What is my recourse. The truck was found in the worst drug infested area 2 hours from me and I do not want it back. Since they did settle and they have title are they not obligated to make good on this check? And what about how long it has been that I have been without a vehicle?

Hello Anna,

At best, this is a case of blatant incompetence.

If I'm reading this correctly, you filed a comp claim for your stolen vehicle and the claim reached a settlement.  Settlement meaning they sent you a check and took title to the vehicle.
That's it.  The vehicle now belongs to the insurance company.  If it is recovered after the conclusion of the settlement, it is their's to deal with.

Since this is either blatant incompetence or blatant thievery, I would suggest that you contact your carrier IMMEDIATELY. DO NOT SPEAK TO YOUR ADJUSTER.  Using your claim number as your source, ask person answering the central number for the name and contact information for the CLAIMS MANAGER over your claim.  If they tell you your claim is closed, tell them it is not and that you demand to speak with someone in authority.  When you reach this person, make certain you confirm his/her identity and position.  Do not settle for anyone other than a manager.

Calmly and rationally explain the problem to the claims manager and demand that they re-issue your claim check.  Give them a time limit.  I would give them 48 hours maximum.  

I suggest you speak to the manager on the phone and also send him an email and/or a fax and/or a certified mailing.  Title your document a DEMAND FOR SETTLEMENT.  Again, give them 48 hours hours to act.

In your phone conversation and in your written notice, warn the manager that if they do not abide by your demand within 48 hours, you will turn the matter over to an attorney.

Insurance companies do not want lawyers involved.  I repeat, insurance companies do not want lawyers involved.

But beware.  No idle threats.  If they give you trouble, or if they do not act within 48 hours, you need to make good on your demand.

You will need an attorney to send them a strong demand letter.  Almost always, this will end your problem.  As for payment to the attorney, expect him/her to charge you for the time to write the letter.  If they continue to refuse to honor your claim, speak to the attorney about your further options.

Just FYI, if the vehicle had been recovered prior to settlement, the carrier would have been required to do one of two things.

- Total the vehicle for damages

- Repair your vehicle to include any and all body damages and any and all mechanical damages.

The key here is that the claim had been settled prior to the recovery.

Be stern.

Good luck.


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Jane Pytel


I can answer questions related to auto accidents, auto damage, auto theft claims, or personal injury claims. I am specifically suited to answer questions concerning insurance investigations and the effects of those investigations such as claim delays, claim denials, examinations under oath, or the special investigations unit. I can answer most any question that relates to proper claims investigations, or claims handling procedures and processes. I have authored several ebooks which provide claim guidance for consumers. Those books are available on Amazon Kindle: Power To Profit - will provide you with the knowledge you need to overcome the patterned obstacles that insurance companies will use to delay, devalue, or deny your valid insurance claim. The No Nonsense Guide to Accident Settlement - Teaches you how to manage your claim, how to identify the precise tactics likely to be used against you, and how you must respond.


12 years of experience with 3 major insurance companies. I hold an all lines adjusters license in Florida. I am well versed in claims handling, claims investigations, and industry standards related to both. The bulk of my experience stems from my 10 years as a police officer / detective. Building on that investigative experience, I became an SIU (Special Investigations Unit) Investigator. Accordingly, my unique expertise lies in the investigation of claims. What is necessary and related, what is not necessary and related? What constitutes a fair claims investigation? What recourse is available for consumers who suspect they are experiencing unfair claims delays? During the course of my experience, I became a certified trainer, instructing adjusters and investigators proper techniques for claims investigation and claims handling.

B.A., Communications, University of Miami 350 credit hours of intense investigative training, Miami Dade Police 80 hours of investigative training, various Federal Agencies, Miami, Fl Intensive Accident Reconstruction and Pedestrian Injury Analysis, NHTSA, National Highway Traffic Safety Agency, Oklahoma City, OK 2 weeks Auto Damage Appraisal, Winston Salem, NC Legal Principles Claim Specialist, AEI

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